City charity gets surprise pizza delivery for the homeless

Piles of pizzas have been donated to a Bristol homeless charity which is coordinating the care of hundreds of people accommodated in hotels across the city.

The store manager at The Co-operative Food – Kingswood had a larger than normal delivery of pizzas in store and wanted to make sure they went to a good home.

He rallied nearby colleagues in School Road and Whiteladies Road and together they gathered around 150 pizzas – plus three marrows from the store manager’s allotment.

All of the pizzas were donated to Caring in Bristol which is currently in need of support to help the charity and its volunteers continue to support those in need.

Lee Brankin, Store Manager at Two Mile Hill Road store which is part of Southern Co-op, said: “Throughout the pandemic, the ‘cheers drive’ run by Caring in Bristol, has been delivering hot food to the homeless around Bristol and also leaving them with food to eat the following day for breakfast and dinner as well.

“We heard about this good cause as our charity partner Julian Trust has allowed the volunteers to use its facilities at this time due to the pandemic having an affect on its own service provision.

“We were really pleased to know the pizzas would be used as part of a packed lunch which also gets handed out with the hot food on an evening.”

Caring in Bristol, formerly known as Caring at Christmas, first formed in 1987 by members of the Julian Trust Charity in response to the particular gap for homeless and vulnerable people during Christmas and the new year.

It has continued to grow and expand its work and services now include a large scale food provision project, Cheers Drive; an annual homeless survival guide to help guide volunteers and beneficiaries on where and how to find services across the city; the Bristol Nightstop project to help find emergency provision in volunteer’s houses for young people aged 18-25 at risk of homelessness; the 365 Shelter to provide emergency night shelter; day provision for young people experiencing homelessness; a community liaison and education project ‘Get to Know’; and an early morning breakfast provision for people using our shelter ‘Caring at Breakfast’.

Kathryn Manners, Project Coordinator at Caring in Bristol, said: “We’re grateful for the donation as we’re always looking for support from local businesses for our vital work in Bristol, and for volunteers to help us continue our work.

“The donated pizzas were cooked, and went out in the food packs to around 200 people who are being support by our Cheers Drive project – our amazing volunteer team distributed the food over the weekend. A donation of £10 could provide breakfast, lunch and dinner to someone experiencing homelessness during the pandemic, food donations like this from Southern Co-op help your donation money to go further too.”

Further details can be found via www.caringinbristol.co.uk.

For more information on Southern Co-op’s commitment to support local communities, visit www.thesouthernco-operative.co.uk/love-your-neighbourhood/.

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